Newcastle has launched plans to become one of the UK’s first super-connected cities in a scheme that will boost the city’s economy by a predicted £150 million.
Go Digital Newcastle, a government scheme delivered by Newcastle City Council, will see 97% of Newcastle given access to superfast fibre broadband by 2015, free Wi-Fi in Newcastle City Centre, a cloud computing centre, business connection vouchers and a business support programme.
Newcastle is one of 22 super-connected cities where small businesses (SMEs), charities and social enterprises can apply for connection vouchers worth up to £3,000 to get connected to high speed/high grade broadband with one of nearly two hundred registered suppliers.
Local charities are being urged to sign up for a connection voucher to open up a world of superfast opportunities for their organisation. They will also be able to benefit from a free business support programme offering digital master classes and workshops.
Council leader Cllr Nick Forbes said: “Superfast broadband can help turn local heroes into superheroes – our city-based businesses can use the faster speeds to reach new markets and products and compete on both a national and international scale. The economic benefits to the city will be significant and further cement Newcastle’s reputation as an exciting place to live and work. Go Digital Newcastle will boost the local economy and help create and protect local jobs.”
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